THE RESTAURANT RESCUE PROJECT
About the Restaurant Rescue Project
The Restaurant Rescue Project (#RestaurantRescueProject) is an independent, industry-driven initiative to preserve the gastronomic culture of Cape Town by saving the restaurant sector, which has been crippled by the pandemic and the measures taken to curb its spread.
The recent announcement of a 9pm curfew was yet another blow to the once-thriving industry, adding to its mounting woes: the loss of revenue as a result of almost four months’ lockdown closure, insurers refusing to honour business interruption claims, lack of public sector support, the ongoing struggle to access TERS/UIF, and the ban on wine and alcohol sales. The implementation of a curfew limits sit-down dining even further, and is expected to be the final nail in the coffin for many of the Cape’s most iconic and best-loved restaurants.
The Restaurant Rescue Project calls on wineries and businesses to ‘adopt a restaurant’, helping to preserve the jobs and livelihoods of this sector cut adrift.
How it began…
The initiative was borne of a collaboration between Radford Dale, an innovative Stellenbosch-based winery and Platter’s 2017 Red Wine Producer of the Year, and Grub & Vine, a small, family-owned bistro located on Bree street in Cape Town.
Alex Dale, MD at Radford Dale, kicked off the initiative by committing almost half a million Rand’s worth of stock to supporting the restaurant sector, following a similar contribution during the previous lockdown ban.
This generous contribution was used by Grub & Vine to create a Restaurant Rescue package: individuals could purchase a gift voucher or dining experience from the bistro, and receive a complimentary case of Radford Dale’s critically acclaimed wine (with a normal cellar door case price of R2,385) – effectively enjoying a gastronomic experience plus a case of wine for a spend of R1,400, while receiving almost R4,000’s worth of value.
The package sold out within a matter of days, providing a much-needed injection of funds to the restaurant, and helping it keep its lights on.
Since then, more wineries have come on board, pledging their support to the restaurant industry.
How you can support:
Alex Dale, Founder & MD at Radford Dale
Restaurants and gastronomy are part of the very fabric of Cape Town, and this world-class dynamism is dying a rapid death. The virus has drawn strong parallels with the hospitality industry: just as COVID-19 robs the afflicted of air, so government’s latest measures to curb it are depriving the sector of oxygen. We need to move quickly, collaboratively and with intention, if we are to see it survive.
And not only for the sake of our exalted culinary scene. The hospitality & tourism sectors have a long and vast supply chain, and employ thousands of people – many of whom are the sole breadwinners in their families. If restaurants close, our chefs, waiters, scullers, sommeliers and managers are left out in the cold, without any hope of finding employment for the foreseeable future.
As the owner of a law-abiding, tax-paying business, I am dismayed that not only has there has been virtually no support from the government for the restaurant industry but, worse, its very actions are causing irreparable damage to its ability to operate, to survive and to preserve jobs, livelihoods and hope.
Restaurants and wineries have always had a symbiotic partnership, and it makes far more sense at this juncture to redirect taxable profits towards an industry which desperately needs our help, and which plays a pivotal role in our own long term survival.
Thankfully we still have export markets keeping us alive, so, for this reason, Radford Dale has been able to commit half a million Rand’s worth of our wine to supporting the restaurant sector in Cape Town, in an effort to, in turn, help keep them alive through this pandemic. Following on from a similar donation we made during the initial lock-down period, taking our own support to well over R1 million in stocks of our finest wines. We are not a large Winery by any standards and are digging deep to help others survive.
Many wineries are also deeply impacted by the government’s ban on selling wine and are in no position to help. But others are able to thanks to revenue from export sales and are also providing some of their finest wines free of charge to partner with restaurants and to support this initiative, as you will see from the links provided on this site.
I am calling on wineries as well as other businesses to do the same, and to ‘adopt a restaurant’ as part of The Restaurant Rescue Project. Radford Dale adopted Grub & Vine and succeeded in partnering them in this project to raise a lifeline through the sale of vouchers ; if others can also do the same, we can safeguard the entire eco-system and preserve the jobs and livelihoods of this sector cut adrift by government.
As a winery owner, I believe that in order for us to thrive in the future, the survival of the restaurant industry needs to be supported. Cape Town’s heart must keep beating.
Your support is vital. Please buy a voucher or two, if you possibly can. Then share this site with as many people as possible.
New winery and restaurant partnerships are coming through each day and we will do our best to keep you updated…
|Restaurant / Winery||Status||Employees|
|96 Winery Road | Journey’s End||Buy Voucher||42|
|Blockhouse | Bruce Jack||Buy Voucher||61|
|Cheyne’s | Journey’s End||Buy Voucher||65|
|Codfather | Alheit Vineyards | Spider Pig Wines||Buy Voucher||42|
|Jonkerhuis | Bruce Jack||Buy Voucher||89|
|La Mouette | Strandveld||Buy Voucher||38|
|La Tête | Luddite & Elgin Ridge||Buy Voucher||18|
|SeaBreeze Fish & Shell | De Grendel Wine Farm||Buy Voucher||29|
|Upper Bloem | Villiera||Buy Voucher||18|
|Aubergine Restaurant | Lismore Wine Estate||SOLD OUT||24|
|Black Sheep | Carsten Migliarina Wines & Thelema Mountain Vineyards||SOLD OUT||53|
|Foxcroft | Hilton Vineyards||SOLD OUT||52|
|Grub & Vine | Radford Dale||SOLD OUT||17|
|Pot Luck Club | Warwick||SOLD OUT||59|
|The Test Kitchen | Keermont, Ken Forrester, Jordan, Oldenburg, Hartenberg, Radford Dale||SOLD OUT||45|
|Wolfgat | Savage David & Nadia Sadie Donovan Rall||SOLD OUT||13|